Motoring

Kia Seltos Review: A new look, a boost for Kia

Good luck trying to secure a new Kia Seltos in a showroom today, despite all the worries of the world, even before then the Seltos had a waiting period for deliveries stretching into the months and for good reason – it’s a great car.

Boosted by a cracking good TV campaign to activate the brand’s sponsorship of the Australian Open in Melbourne at the start of the year there’s some real hype about this car.

I’ve driven the base model Kia Seltos S and the top end Kia Seltos GT Line in the last two weeks – both were the same “Starbright Yellow” which really does stand out, and I’m not sure in a good way.

But you have the choice of plenty of colours so that won’t be an issue for a buyer.

Outside the fact that Kia has probably the best ownership experience in Australia right now with a 7 Year Warranty and Fixed Price servicing – why is this car so popular?

The Looks

It was described to me quite broadly as a “mini Range Rover” by one person, I think mostly referring to the rather squared off looks at the front – and I think thats exactly what’s appealing.

I’m a fan of Kia styling, but the curved bubble look of the Sportage is starting to date a bit, so this hard-edged new age look for Kia is a bloody winner.

There are angles in places you’d think unnecessary but that add so much to the design, and then there’s the entire front end. I think 90% of the design time was spent here and it’s paid off – it’s so intricate and stunning.

The Drive

I find it to be a touch unresponsive, and the steering doesn’t excite, but while it has some sporty looks, and those ads made it edgey AF – I don’t think it’s meant for that at all.

The drive is smooth, you’ve got some punch when you need it, but most importantly you feel a sense of quality on the road. A quiet ride, smooth around the corners.

On a test drive I can’t imagine anyone would find something to dislike.

Seltos comes in a front-wheel drive or all-wheel-drive option and frankly, I preferred the front-wheel-drive on the road. Something about the steering was more direct or refined, but in no way is that to say the AWD was bad.

Frankly though, no idea why you’d need the all-wheel-drive.

The Tech

Packed. Safety wise you’ve got Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Keep Assist, Hill-Start assist, Downhill Brake Control, Stability Control, Reverse sensors, Driver Attention Alert all standard on all models.

Pay extra for things like Blind Spot and Rear Cross Traffic alerts, and sure they are good, but do not downplay the epic set of safety features in the base model here folks.

There’s Android Auto and Apple CarPlay in a 10.25 inch touchscreen, 8 inch on the base model (which was perfectly fine!),

If you go the base model you won’t get Digital Radio, that bigger touch screen, Sat Nav (who needs it with Apple & Android support), and you’ll have manual air conditioning.

The fancy lights throughout the car? Very cool – and very well done. But only on the GT Line models – frankly, I’m not sure it’s worth it, but it is a sign Kia knows full well how to take it to the European brands who specialise in all this fancy stuff.

Kia Sportage vs Kia Seltos?

I don’t know why you buy the Sportage any more. Choose the Space Saver tyre and you’ve got LOADS more space in the boot. With a full-size spare there’s a small advantage with the Seltos.

Passenger wise, you’re not fitting an extra person in the Seltos or the Sportage, they are almost identical in interior size – seriously, you have to see that the Sportage is now an older option, but, if you want a diesel engine, then yep, Sportage is your go-to.

Overall

I love it, and I’m amazed how many other people love the look of it. It’s a seriously great new style for Kia, and I imagine the whole range will undergo a solid face-lift to follow this trend.

Compelling option at a great price. At between $26,690 and $42,690 the drive away deals are excellent, and frankly, I think the lower end of that offers the best value bang for your buck in this mini SUV segment.

Kia Seltos Review: A new look, a boost for Kia

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